Along with a proper foundation, a solid roof is one of the best investments a homeowner can make. The peace of mind gained from knowing that family and friends will stay dry and warm through the frigid months makes for a happy host and joyful festivities.
1. Start readying your roof for the next winter snowstorm by walking around your house and looking for major problem areas visible from ground level. If trees grow near your home, remove any branches that hang over or very close to the roof.
2. Check the roof inside and out, being careful not to fall. Please hire a contractor if you’re not comfortable walking around on the roof, and consider having a second person within easy hailing range during rooftop excursions. Sweep off all types of debris, making sure to keep gutters and wherever else water is meant to flow free of obstructions and blockages.
3. Flush out your downspouts so that melting snows have somewhere to go. Standing water can freeze, causing ice dams to form, which in turn can do significant damage. Look at the roof from inside the attic or crawlspace for evidence of water intrusion, warping, and other such issues, then call in a professional to fix whatever is broken.
4. Go up into the attic after a heavy late-Fall rain to scan for leaks – areas that display water stains, are damp to the touch or dripping. During the winter, even tiny leaks can lead to heat loss and the formation of ice dams. Ice dams are very dangerous because they can potentially tear through the sturdiest of roofing systems and injure the persons living inside your home.
5. Keep an eye out for parts of the roof that appear to be buckling, or sinking – these are a strong indication that the roof’s supportive framework has given way and must be replaced soon. Few things ruin a happy holiday season as surely as a caved-in roof.
6. Concentrate on areas where two different types of materials meet, such as at chimneys, gutters, built-on extensions, etc. These places are prone to leakages because different materials often don’t bond well, and tend to separate over time. Seal up cracks and holes using a silicone sealant or expanding foam, making sure to use a fire-proof foam around chimneys and other areas that could be exposed to high heat.
7. Check for loose or broken shingles because these might let in water that can damage the layers of material underneath, shortening your roof’s overall lifetime. Call in a professional to replace any missing or damaged shingles you may find, making sure to have a new roof installed every couple of decades or as soon as a majority of shingles start showing signs of excessive wear and tear. When the snow does begin to fall, try to remove it from your roof as often as possible using a blunt, long tool with an extendable handle.
Please make sure to keep track of any roofing issues your find and share them with our team of professionals at AROCON Roofing and Construction should you call in an expert for help!